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Trump's unprecedented moments as president

President Donald Trump has always been known for doing things differently, and his first year in office has only confirmed that he doesn't follow traditional norms.

Trump's use of Twitter alone has separated him from past presidents.

His surprising comments, public feuds with celebrities and other politicians, and attacks on the press have been unprecedented -- or "unpresidented," as the president once wrote.

Here's a look at some of the things Trump has done that we wouldn't have expected from a president.

Use vulgar language to describe struggling nations

The president allegedly referred to Haiti and countries
Photo Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Mandel Ngan

The president allegedly referred to Haiti and countries in Africa as "shithole countries" in a meeting on Jan. 11, 2018, with lawmakers about immigration policy.

According to several reports, Trump questioned why the United States would want to accept immigrants from Haiti and African nations, and said the country should have more people from nations such as Norway.

Several lawmakers and others quickly decried the president's comment.

"A repulsive, unacceptable remark, far beneath the dignity of the presidency. Our country is better than this," New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand tweeted.

During a news briefing in Geneva, UN human rights spokesman Rupert Colville said there was no other word but "racist" to describe the remarks.

"You cannot dismiss entire countries and continents as 'shitholes' whose entire populations, who are not white, are therefore not welcome," he said.

Trump denied using the vulgar language about Haiti and Africa in a tweet.

"The language used by me at the DACA meeting was tough, but this was not the language used," he wrote.

Brag about the size of his ‘nuclear button’

In a tweet on Jan. 2, 2018, Trump
Photo Credit: Getty Images / Nicholas Kamm

In a tweet on Jan. 2, 2018, Trump said he has a "bigger & more powerful" "nuclear button," taunting North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

"North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un just stated that the 'Nuclear Button is on his desk at all times,' " the president wrote. "Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!"

Foreign policy experts and lawmakers reacted with shock to the tweet.

"Spoken like a petulant ten year old," former counselor of the Department of State Eliot Cohen wrote on Twitter. "But one with nuclear weapons - for real - at his disposal. How responsible people around him, or supporting him, can dismiss this or laugh it off is beyond me."

Rep. Jim Himes (D-Conn.) said on CNN that the tweet was another example of the unprecedented nature of Trump's statements.

"It really doesn't matter what the President of the United States says anymore because it is so bizarre, strange, not true, infantile, and we've just never lived in a country where what the President of the United States says doesn't really matter," he said.

Tell the NFL to fire players

The president tweeted several times that the NFL
Photo Credit: Getty Images / Mark Wilson

The president tweeted several times that the NFL should ban players from kneeling during the National Anthem, which some started to do during the 2016 season as a form of protest against police violence and the oppression of African-Americans.

Trump also said players should be suspended or fired if they do kneel. At a rally in Alabama in September 2017, he said, "Wouldn't you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, 'Get that son of a bitch off the field right now. Out! He's fired. He's fired!'"

In response to Trump's statements, several players locked arms with one another or knelt as a team, and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said the comments showed a "lack of respect for the NFL."

"The NFL and our players are at our best when we help create a sense of unity in our country and our culture," Goodell said in a statement. "Divisive comments like these demonstrate an unfortunate lack of respect for the NFL, our great game and all of our players, and a failure to understand the overwhelming force for good our clubs and players represent in our communities."

Say a media company’s license should be revoked

Trump repeatedly has called various media outlets
Photo Credit: Getty Images / Alex Wong

Trump repeatedly has called various media outlets "fake news," but he went even further when he said the licenses for NBC and other broadcast news networks should be challenged and when he banned the New York Times and others from a press briefing.

After NBC published stories in October 2017 about Trump allegedly saying he wanted a "tenfold increase" in the U.S. nuclear arsenal and about Secretary of State Rex Tillerson calling the president a "moron," Trump suggested their license should be revoked. Licenses are issued by the Federal Communications Commission to broadcast stations.

"With all of the Fake News coming out of NBC and the Networks, at what point is it appropriate to challenge their License? Bad for country!" he wrote on Twitter.

"Network news has become so partisan, distorted and fake that licenses must be challenged and, if appropriate, revoked. Not fair to public!" another tweet said.

Jessica Rosenworcel, the commissioner of FCC, quickly responded to Trump's tweets.

"Not how it works," she wrote.

"Freedom of the press is a cornerstone of our democracy," she wrote in another tweet.

Before that threat, Trump barred certain news outlets, including The New York Times and CNN, from a White House press briefing on Feb. 24, 2017, without an explanation. Reporters from The Associated Press and Time magazine, who were not barred, walked out in protest.

Executive editor of The New York Times Dean Baquet highlighted the unprecedented nature of the president's action.

"Nothing like this has ever happened at the White House in our long history of covering multiple administrations of different parties," he said in a statement.

Give his daughter a White House role

The White House announced in March 2017 that
Photo Credit: Getty Images Pool / Molly Riley

The White House announced in March 2017 that Ivanka Trump would have an official role in the West Wing as an adviser to her father.

She has access to classified information, her own office and a government-issued phone. But she does not have a salary.

Questions of nepotism were brought up early on in Trump's presidency when he made Ivanka's husband, Jared Kushner, a senior adviser. The Justice Department concluded that the appointment was not a violation of anti-nepotism laws.

Still, the move is not common for a president. CNN contributor and author Kate Andersen Brower pointed to former President George W. Bush's work on his father's campaign as a similar situation.

"But even he wasn't sitting in on high-level policy meetings when his father was in the White House. It definitely complicates matters when someone who can't be fired -- aka a family member -- is this involved in an administration," she said in an interview with CNN.

And other politicians have expressed concern over his daughter's role.

"Ms. Trump's increasing, albeit unspecified, White House role, her potential conflicts of interest, and her commitment to voluntarily comply with relevant ethics and conflicts of interest laws have resulted in substantial confusion," Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Tom Carper wrote in a letter to the Office of Government Ethics on March 29, 2017.

Accuse protesters of being paid

After the Tax March on April 15, 2017,
Photo Credit: Getty Images Pool / Olivier Douliery

After the Tax March on April 15, 2017, which had hundreds of thousands of participants across the country, the president tweeted, "Someone should look into who paid for the small organized rallies yesterday."

And this wasn't the first time he suggested that protesters were paid. He also tweeted after the demonstrations at several Republican town hall events in February, calling them "so-called angry crowds" and accusing them of being "planned out by liberal activists."

But even some Republicans disagreed with Trump on this claim. Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), who was among the lawmakers met by protesters, shut down the allegation that they were illegitimate demonstrations. "I want to make clear it's all legitimate," he told reporters. "If Hillary Clinton had been elected president, there'd be people from the conservative end of the spectrum to probably be doing the same thing."

Attack a federal judge

After U.S. District Judge James Robart blocked Trump's
Photo Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Nicholas Kamm

After U.S. District Judge James Robart blocked Trump's initial travel ban, the president didn't just express his disagreement with the decision. He also called Robart a "so-called judge."

"The opinion of this so-called judge, which essentially takes law-enforcement away from our country, is ridiculous and will be overturned!" he wrote. He also tweeted that the public should blame Robart and the court system if something bad happens in the country.

Many responded to Trump's tweet with surprise for his lack of respect for an independent branch of government that has the constitutional right to check the actions of the executive branch.

"POTUS's attack on Judge Robart shows a disdain for an ind. judiciary that doesn't bend to his wishes & lack of respect for the Constitution," Sen. Chuck Schumer tweeted.

Trump again attacked the court when a different district judge blocked his order on sanctuary cities. "First the Ninth Circuit rules against the ban & now it hits again on sanctuary cities-both ridiculous rulings. See you in the Supreme Court!" he wrote on April 26, 2017.

Accuse a former president of wiretapping him

Trump accused former President Barack Obama of wiretapping
Photo Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Mandel Ngan

Trump accused former President Barack Obama of wiretapping Trump Tower during the campaign in a series of tweets on March 4, 2017.

Without providing any evidence for the claims, Trump tweeted, "Terrible! Just found out that Obama had my 'wires tapped' in Trump Tower just before the victory. Nothing found. This is McCarthyism!" In another tweet, he wrote, "How low has President Obama gone to tapp [sic] my phones during the very sacred election process. This is Nixon/Watergate. Bad (or sick) guy!"

FBI Director James Comey and former national intelligence director James Clapper have said no such wiretap was requested or issued.

Comey also asked the Justice Department to publicly reject Trump's accusation. He did not make an official public statement but a source told CNN that the FBI director was "incredulous" after seeing Trump's claim.

Discuss a response to North Korea's missile test at dinner in Mar-a-lago

Trump came under scrutiny after diners at his
Photo Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Mandel Ngan

Trump came under scrutiny after diners at his Mar-a-Lago club in Florida saw him and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe apparently discussing their joint response to a North Korea missile test on Feb. 11, 2017. Photos posted to Facebook show the president on his cellphone and members of his staff and Abe's staff huddled around laptops.

Democrats quickly called Trump out for the lack of protocol. "There's no excuse for letting an international crisis play out in front of a bunch of country club members like dinner theater," Rep. Nancy Pelosi tweeted. Republicans were also surprised by Trump's handling of the situation. "Usually that's not a place where you do that kind of thing," Sen. Marco Rubio said.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer said the two leaders did not review any classified information at the table and were discussing "news conference logistics," but many still expressed surprise that any conversations were had at the club.

Claim negative polls are fake

When multiple polls showed low approval ratings for
Photo Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Nicholas Kamm

When multiple polls showed low approval ratings for Trump early on in his presidency, he tweeted, "Any negative polls are fake news."

While every poll has a margin of error and none are perfect, there is no evidence to show that polls that don't favor Trump are fake. And even when past presidents haven't liked their ratings in polls, none have gone as far as Trump to call them fake.

"This is bizarre behavior. Something is not right," Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas) tweeted after Trump's tweet.

Attack companies and celebrities

Trump has called out companies and celebrities multiple
Photo Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Saul Loeb

Trump has called out companies and celebrities multiple times as president. When Nordstrom announced its was not selling the new season of his daughter Ivanka Trump's fashion line, Trump tweeted, "My daughter Ivanka has been treated so unfairly by @Nordstrom. She is a great person -- always pushing me to do the right thing! Terrible!"

When Meryl Streep denounced Trump's actions in a speech at the 2017 Golden Globes, Trump called Streep "one of the most over-rated actresses in Hollywood" and "a Hillary flunky who lost big."

And when Trump thought the ratings of "The New Celebrity Apprentice" weren't high enough, he criticized host Arnold Schwarzenegger during a prayer service, saying "I want to just pray for Arnold if we can -- for those ratings." After Schwarzenegger announced he was leaving the show, Trump said the ratings had been "sad" and "pathetic" because of Schwarzenegger.

Claim millions of people voted illegally (after he won)

Even after Trump was inaugurated, he continued to
Photo Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Saul Loeb

Even after Trump was inaugurated, he continued to claim that 3 million people voted illegally in the election.

"I will be asking for a major investigation into VOTER FRAUD, including those registered to vote in two states, those who are illegal and .... even, those registered to vote who are dead (and many for a long time). Depending on results, we will strengthen up voting procedures!" he wrote on Jan. 25, 2017.

State officials and top lawmakers, including Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.), have repeatedly said there is no evidence that there was voter fraud in the election.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said if Trump does not correct his claim and recognize that the election was free and fair, it will "erode his ability to govern this country."

Use derogatory nicknames for other lawmakers

During the 2016 campaign, Trump regularly used nicknames
Photo Credit: Getty Images / Sara D. Davis

During the 2016 campaign, Trump regularly used nicknames to refer to his opponents or other lawmakers, including "Crooked Hillary," "Little Marco," "Low Energy Jeb" and "Goofy Elizabeth Warren." Even after he became president, he didn't stop.

In a tweet on Oct. 24, 2017, he called Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) "liddle' Bob Corker."

Prior to that tweet Corker called the White House "an adult day care center."

"Same untruths from an utterly untruthful president. #AlertTheDaycareStaff," Corker wrote in a tweet.


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